Seems hard to believe that we have been here on our mission for more than 21 months! It has been a while since we have updated our blog. We've been busy with several things, but the work continues and we enjoy our time here in Lowell, Massachusetts. We continue to assist with English classes and are teaching several people the temple preparation course. We enjoy doing that and seeing people progress in the gospel and enjoy those first experiences in the temple. We've now gone through a few transfers since our last post. The young missionaries come and go. Some have completed their missions and some are now marrying and finding their eternal soulmates. Are last count we have served with 65 young missionaries in our 21 months here in the Lowell District. Our fellow senior missionary couple, the Dixons, have finished their mission and returned home this past week. We have received word that a senior couple, Elder and Sister Reynolds, will arrive here in mid-December and will take our place supporting the Spanish group.
We also have enjoyed visits from several of our children and grandchildren over the past few months and made a trip to Kentucky to attend the baptism of our grandson, Jace Zollinger (son of Mark and Bonnie Zollinger). Here are some pictures of each of the family. We were able to show them some of the wonders of New England that we have enjoyed here. Senior missionaries can get permission to travel outside the mission for critical family events, and can have family visit them on the mission field. We enjoyed seeing our family again. It is one of the perks of senior missionary service. We enjoyed Elder Rasband's talk in the last general conference calling for more senior missionaries to serve. We have felt the blessing of being needed here, especially to be involved in the lives of the young missionaries. Below are a number of pictures with our family. As you can see, Hampton Beach, NH became a favorite place to visit, along with the USS Albacore Museum in Portsmouth, NH.
One of the great surprises came when we were on an approved (anytime you leave the mission boundary you need permission to do so) trip to Boston with our son Tyler and his family to see the USS Constitution. I was below deck taking a tour and I turned around and saw a familiar face! It was Patrick Trujillo who I worked with at Los Alamos National Laboratory! He said I just sent you a text asking if you were in Boston. Indeed he did. I have to say that out of the many fine people I worked with at LANL, Patrick is one of the finest. He was in Boston with his wife Shannon. We snapped a picture to remember this chance encounter. I do miss working at the laboratory.
We were also pleased to receive a visit from one of our special missionaries, Hermana Isabella Fife and her mother in October. Hermana Fife was here in Lowell when we arrived and we spent several months with her here. She became a member of our family during that time. We were glad she could stop in and introduce us to her mother and grandparents.
With Thanksgiving nearly here, we are indeed grateful for all the many experiences of the past 21 months. Our time here may be coming to a close, but the memories will never leave us. Lowell and the people will always be with us.